Photo

3 Quick Tips to Instantly Improve Your Personal Devotions

By: Kristen Clark

Do you feel like your personal devotional time is…

A. Vibrant and really consistent.

B. Pretty good, but could get better.

C. Okay, but in need of some passion and consistency.

D. Pretty irregular. And honestly, quite boring.

E. It basically never happens.

If you picked B or below, this post is for you. Keep reading. And guess what – this post is written for me too. I usually fall under the letter B. I’m forever striving to improve my quiet time.

Since we’re in this boat together, I’m going to share 3 quick tips that have helped me instantly improve my personal devotion time over the years.

They’re actually quite simple. And as I’ve worked at applying them, my quiet times have improved – greatly.

But before I give you the 3 quick tips, let’s chat for a second about why having “personal devotion time” is even important.

For starters, when I use the words “personal devotions” I’m referring to your personal quiet time/time with the Lord/Bible reading time/prayer time/etc. It’s simply that small chunk of time that we each set aside once a day to spend alone with God.

Whether you’ve made this a regular habit or not, it’s extremely important to spend time alone with God each day.

Why? Because being a Christian is built upon our relationship with Christ.

God gave us the Bible to speak into our lives, and He gave us prayer for us to respond back to Him.

In our crazy, busy, fast-paced culture, we have to make the daily choice to slow down and seek His face.

Here are a few reasons we must have a personal devotional time:

  • As sinful humans, we need God’s daily wisdom and insight from the Bible to know how to live.
  • We need daily doses of humility by bowing our heads before Him and constantly reminding ourselves that He is God and we are not. “Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his” (Psalm 100:3).
  • As sinful humans, we need regular moments of repentance for our many sins.
  • We need quiet moments of worship and adoration for our King. We need to develop a heart of “devotion” for our Savior.
  • We need to bring the needs of others before God in prayer, and seek His face on their behalf.

I hope you are catching a glimpse of why a personal time of “devotion” to God is so important.

Now that we’re on the same page there, here are 3 quick tips to instantly improve your quiet time:

1. Get ready the night before.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to bed way too late (I’m a night owl) only to wake up the next day exhausted and in NO mood for a personal devotional time. The fix? Get more sleep.

I have learned that my best morning devotion times begin the night before.

Instead of watching that late night movie, browsing Instagram for an extra 30 minutes, or reading that book, try turning out the lights a little earlier. Our bodies need rest, and we function at our best when we get enough sleep. The best way to set your morning devotional time up for success is to get to bed at a decent hour the night before.

2. Don’t get on your phone.

The biggest enemy of my personal devotion time is my cell phone. I’m not kidding! I’ll wake up feeling rested and ready to have a great quiet time…then…I’ll notice a few new text messages on my phone.

With the sincere intention to quickly check them, I find myself browsing around (getting distracted on Facebook, email, Girldefined.com, photostream, etc.) and instantly lose 30 minutes of time. Then I’ll quickly scrape up a few puny minutes of devotional time. Ever done that?

The quick fix?

Don’t touch, look at, or think about your cell phone until after your devotional time with God.

Just don’t go there. Leave it on the charger. You will survive. Technology is extremely distracting for most of us (this goes for a computer and tablet as well), and has a sneaky way of hijacking our time with God.

By implementing this one simple area of discipline, you will be amazed at how focused and “interruption free” your quiet time can be.

3. Use a Bible study book to help guide your time.

My personal devotional time has gone through many phases over the years. I’ve done everything from the One Year Bible, to the chronological Bible, to jumping around in different books of the Bible, to using a Bible study book to facilitate what I read each day, to feeling uninspired and simply reading wherever my Bible opens to.

Over the years I have noticed that my personal devotional time has always flourished when I have a plan. Most often, this plan includes reading a Bible study book to guide my reading time.

I am currently using a book called Behold Your God: Studies on the Attributes of God. 

This book creates a Bible study plan for me and guides me through studying God’s word.

Nothing makes a devotional time harder than not knowing what to read or where to start. Get a plan. Either figure out a Bible reading plan ahead of time and come prepared, or use a Bible study book to help guide your time.

So there you go!

Those are my 3 quick tips to instantly improve your personal devo time. Those 3 tips have helped me a TON (and continue to help me as I implement them) and I’m positive they will be helpful to you too.

I challenge you to implement these 3 tips right away into your life. Go to bed at a decent hour tonight, don’t look at your phone in the morning until after your devotional time, and plan now for what you will read/study tomorrow.

Okay girl, I want to hear from you!

  • What areas do you struggle in the most when it comes to having a personal devotional time?
  • What time of day do you find it easiest and most productive to have your personal devotions?
  • What books/Bible studies have helped you study God’s Word?

Photo Credit: Here

Girl Reading

images images images
  • Lizzy

    I read my Bible right before I go to bed, after all of my siblings have gone to sleep. I’m not sure if nighttime is the best, but it’s literally the only time where I can have peace and quiet. Having 10 younger siblings, it’s impossible to have any time to myself so I wait till they’re asleep. Unfortunately sometimes I stay up way to late and I’m really tired in the morning.
    My laptop, is also a huge distraction. But now I have a little plan. Whenever I want to get on my laptop, I’ll do something productive first. I’ll check and make sure my choirs are done and then my laptop can be kind of like a reward for doing work first. It’s hard, but I’m getting better. Naturally my first thought when I wake up is too check my laptop but now I do some cleaning first.

    Since I just got into the habit of reading my Bible every day, I thought that first I’d read it beginning to end. I’m currently in Numbers and, if you want to know the truth, I’m trying to get through it as quickly as possible. It’s just really boring. I don’t understand how learning about ancient sacrifices and laws is going to help me now. After I finish, do you have any suggestions on what I should read next?

    • Marie

      The Old Testament is very important for several reasons, two of which I will discuss for a minute right now. First of all because it shows you all of the work and sacrifices that had to be accomplished to be one of God’s children during the old covenant. The other reason is because alot of the stuff in the old testament symbolizes Jesus and the gospel; it points to Him. If you pay close attention you will find quite a few of these places. In Matthew, Jesus said that He didn’t come to destroy the law but to fullfill it. The reason we don’t have to follow all of those Jewish laws is not because Jesus just threw out the old laws, but became the sacrifice, thus fulfilling them. You can look at the sacrifices required and see how they symbolize Christ’s sacrifice for us. I hope this gives you a greater craving for reading the Old Testament, I used to feel similar to the way you feel now 🙂

  • Grace

    Hey 🙂

    Only recently I said to myself that I NEED to read my Bible everyday and have a quiet moment with God at least once. I’ll do a devotional before I go to sleep and I have found this works quite well as it’s nice to end the day relaxed and ready for tomorrow.

    I felt a bit awkward when I read the second tip about not going on your phone because I use technology to help me with my study. The Bible App has plans on it which I have only just discovered so I have been working my way through one of them and sometimes I will play quiet worship music in the background. Although, I do have a rule that I am not allowed to touch anything outside the Bible App, it can be hard but I manage to put it to the back of my mind. 😀

    I find it difficult to not let my mind drift when I’m doing my devotion, I have to constantly remind myself to stay focused and to ignore the things that nag at me during. I also find it hard to be enthusiastic about it, I’m definantly committed and can’t go to sleep without reading my Bible but it always feels like something’s lacking. I know that I shouldn’t but sometimes I can feel a bit angry at myself and confused as to why I don’t feel excited and why everything feels bland. :/

    Thanks for the post :):):)

  • Giselle

    I decided to make the devotional time a daily routine when I realized I was taking care of my physical health, but not giving the same attention to my spiritual needs. So, if I know I need to sleep 6 hours a day, and I need to eat every 4 hours, I need to read the Bible everyday to keep my soul in balance too! I prefer to get into my personal devotion before bedtime. I set up an alarm, and everynight at 10 pm I shall stop whatever I’m doing to read the Bible. I use an Bible app that provides all kinds of study – in this birthday month, I’m studying about godly joy, and it’s been a blessing to me. It helps me to clear up my mind before falling asleep.

    • Leisha

      What’s the bible app called?

      • Tiffany

        The is an app called The Bible app and that has great Bible studies and devotionals on there. Hope this helps and I hope you continue daily in your quiet times! 🙂

        • Leisha

          Thanks for the information:)

      • Jesusfreak17

        Bible gateway is good also.

        • Leisha

          Okay. Great:) Thanks for the suggestion:)

          • Jesusfreak17

            🙂 You can also download a version on your phone with it for when you don’t have wifi.

  • Elizabeth Williams

    I totally agree! I find that it’s best to stay disciplined and make it a priority. I take it very seriously! lol Like you said, I make it a point to make sure I don’t stay up late because I know that will make it harder to get up in the morning. And I don’t do any checking on my phone during that time, unless it’s to respond to a text really quick. I pray every night for God to help me get up in the morning! And it helps that I get up earlier than everyone else so it’s really quiet. The time we spend with God every day like this is so important!

  • Elisabeth

    I have only a few things to say, thanks, and I struggle with all of them!!Please pray that I will get better at it.

  • Kay

    Thank you so much!! I need to implement all three of these tips… My problem is that I’m just not feeling the passion and drive to spend time with God. I just haven’t had a personal connection with Him in awhile. I started a devotional on my Bible app on my cellphone, but I don’t think that helps my focus… Plus if I don’t have WiFi I have the excuse not to do it. I’m also a night owl, and I have summer classes for college so I usually stay up late to do homework. So I’m sort of burning my free time to sleep and do homework. I’m just not feeling connected enough to “fit God in,” and I hate feeling far away from Him. I don’t know how to get close to Him again if I don’t feel like spending the time to do so…

  • Thanks os much for this! Super helpful, as I found that I do not follow many of these steps! Thank you!!!

  • omi

    Thank you so much for this article I’ve always struggled with the devotion needed and passion and time and I want to thank you for this article. I’m personally a night-owl and try to do as much as I can at night so I get more sleep in the morning however I heard the more sleep you get before mid-night, those are the hours that count the most.

  • Maria Wilson

    I am probably C and below. I gotta definitely amp up my devotional time with the LORD.


Free
e-book img
img

Sign up to receive our blog posts via e-mail and get a copy of our free e-book:
Reaching Beyond Myself
30 Day Devotional

Privacy guarantee: We will never share your e-mail address with anyone else